Roland’s Sunday Smart Trends #177
August 26th, 2007

Dublin company creating debit card for Second Life

Perfect Card, which has been in business for two years now, provides debit cards on the back of the MasterCard platform and is actively looking at breaking into new markets and new countries. “Already people can use our cards to buy goods online,” explained Perfect Card’s Nikki Evans. “We realised that setting up a direct physical sales channel in each country would take years So we looked at Second Life and realised a virtual version would give us access to an audience of 8.5 million people.”
Source: SiliconRepublic.com, Ireland, August 20, 2007

In Japan, 3D images in your pocket

Japanese mobile phones already let users shoot films and share them with friends. It may not be long before the images go another step — becoming completely three-dimensional. Japan’s Hitachi, Ltd. has developed a lightweight 3D display that can potentially be adapted for mobile devices such as telephones.
Source: AFP, August 21, 2007

The First Web 2.0 Burger Joint and 30 Menu Suggestions

[Note: This is the place to find the recipes for the Facebook, Digg, or Twitter burgers. Recommended for a good laugh. Here is the introduction.] So today I am in a taxi in NYC and we are at a red light when I see the best name for a burger joint ever: brgr. It’s totally Web 2.0! Remember the days before the Internet when every pest control company was named: AAAAAAAA Pest Control? It seems Web 2.0 names have invaded offline today as well! If you are interested, Gothamist has a review of the burger joint. I went into brgr and made some suggestions for additions to their menu that follow the Web 2.0 theme.
Source: Allen Stern, CenterNetworks, August 21, 2007

A nontraditional software campaign with a presidential appeal

Fifteen years ago, a presidential candidate named Bill Clinton spoke often about believing in “a place called Hope.” Today, there is a presidential candidate named Ray Hopewood – but believe in him at your peril. That is because Hopewood is a fictional character, the focus of an extensive campaign – advertising campaign, that is — for a software company called BigFix. The humorous campaign is, appropriately enough, being waged in the nontraditional media.
Source: Stuart Elliott, via the International Herald Tribune, August 23, 2007

All-in-one credit card

Sick of your wallet bulging with plastic? So are a lot of other consumers who carry, on average, nine credit, debit and loyalty cards, according to financial research firm Celent. Tech entrepreneur Jonathan Ramaci spied an opportunity in those overstuffed wallets to sell a slim, secure gadget that could mimic all of the cards. The $99 device, called the iCache, is as thin as a Razr cell phone. It will go on sale early next year, and Ramaci hopes to sell 7 million units by the end of 2009.
Source: Michal Lev-Ram, Business 2.0 Magazine, August 24, 2007

Mesh Networks: The Future of Police Patrolling

The Motomesh network designed by Motorola streams video to a Los Angeles police officer’s cell phone, PDA or laptop while the officer is patrolling near the cameras. Access to real time video can greatly improve an officer’s accuracy when identifying a suspect, according to the police department. The footage can also be used as evidence in court.
Source: Andrew Petty, TechNewsWorld, August 24, 2007

Mobile phone throwing turns artistic in Finland

Juggling rather than throwing his mobile phone, a teenaged circus performer won the freestyle gold medal at the world championships on Saturday. Taco Cohen of the Netherlands, who was celebrating his 19th birthday, used acrobatics and juggling in his performance which was judged on aesthetics and artistic impression. He told Reuters his performance reflected his training in a youth circus. “Juggling I have done for many years with balls. (But) these are irregular shapes and weights, it is difficult.”
Source: Sakari Suoninen, Reuters, August 25, 2007

The end of traffic jams?

Transport Communications, a new book on the future of transport by two New Zealand professors, brings hope that nanotechnology, satellite communications, computer chips — and sleeping pills – could put an end to problems such as congestion, the threat from terrorism and increasing fuel prices. The study also reveals new concerns, ranging from ‘Big Brother’ fears of a surveillance society to whether there will be an increasing ‘obesity time bomb’ because homes, vehicles and even clothes will do everything for us.
Source: Juliette Jowit, The Observer, UK, August 26, 2007

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